Monday, December 10, 2007

mouth boogers!

Okay, so I Googled a problem I've been having off and on for years, and the best term I've found that others are using is "mouth boogers." Gross as that is, I'm just gonna call it that because it amuses me.

Over the years, I've noticed that if I use certain toothpastes at night, I wake up the next morning with goo in my mouth, as though the top layer of skin on the insides of my cheeks and lips had sloughed off. (Please note that "slough" is spelled "slough" and not "sluff." Thank you.) Anyway, I figured out from the get-go that it was related to toothpaste and that I wasn't diseased or anything like that.

So, my solution has always been to find a toothpaste that doesn't do this but also gets my teeth clean (not always an available combination), and then stick with it. The best one I'd found was Arm & Hammer Dental Care Baking Soda Toothpaste.

Unfortunately, a few years ago, Arm & Hammer jumped on the teeth-whitening bandwagon and started selling only peroxide-laden, teeth-whitening toothpastes. The good ol', simple, just-get-your-teeth-clean paste is no longer to be found. Bad news for me, because I've discovered that ***every single brand*** of whitening toothpaste causes sloughing on the inside of my mouth ( --> mouth boogers!). So ever since the plain Arm & Hammer disappeared from stores, I've been on the hunt for a toothpaste that works for me.

I mention peroxide as one source of the problem, but the sloughing happens even with toothpastes that don't contain peroxide, so I don't know what ingredient it is that causes it. But whatever the ingredient is, it seems I'm severely allergic to it.

I've tried off-brand, "natural" toothpastes, but although they are not given to causing mouth boogers, they are also not given to getting my teeth clean.

The problem is that sometimes, I'll buy a toothpaste and use it for a week before the sloughing starts again. I finally found a brand in Germany that I could use (the Elmex/Aronal combo), but since I ran out of my German stuff, I've been looking for something here that I can use. I've tried Ed's German Blendi, but that was a no-go. I've tried the plainest Colgate I could find, but that lasted only two days before the mouth boogers were back to party again.

What frustrates me is that nowadays, you can't find just plain, no-frills toothpaste anymore. Everything is "extra-whitening-action" this and "special-tartar-control" that. Any day, I'm expecting to find a toothpaste that will get up and dance a jig for you while you're brushing. I'm thinking of making my own baking soda / salt mixture and just using that for the rest of my life.

Last night, I tried Rembrandt's plain mint toothpaste, and so far so good. I'll keep you posted.

P.S. Right now I'm also trying Crest Whitening Strips, just for the fun of it, and I've discovered that I can only use them once a day instead of the recommended twice, because if I use them twice, my teeth hurt like someone's drilling holes. Can we say 'overly sensitive'?!?


Valerie said...

I know you've tried some natural toothpastes without much luck but I'd recommend Tom's of Maine Natural Whole Care Orange-Mango toothpaste. I'm not usually one for fruity toothpastes (I just never feel as clean as with mint--totally psychological!) Anyway, it's a gel and I found it was really gentle without being wimpy.

The Raabs said...

You mentioned it of course, but have you tried simply using A&H baking soda - plain? That is what a lot of people in the past have used - before toothpaste (and mouth boogers).

furly said...

Dying to know if you ever found a toothpaste that doesn't cause the problem? I have the exact same problem, have had it for as long as i can remember. The best I have found is basic colgate mint gel with no frills, however it isn't a great toothpaste. Just tried Arm & Hammer whitening type gel and it is like a mouth booger party in my mouth. Sick!!

Court said...

Val: I don't know if you caught one of my later posts, but I've been using your Tom's of Maine for the last couple of months, and it works great! Thank you SO much for the advice--I feel like I have reclaimed my life in toothbrushing! ;oD

Scott: Well, if my mouth ever starts reacting badly to Tom's of Maine, I will be reaching for the baking soda, that's certain!

Furly: If you check out one of my later posts, you'll see that I did find an answer! Yay! Tom's of Maine and Rembrandt Mint. I can highly recommend both. I hope you find something that works for you, as I know what a yucky and annoying problem this can be!
Thanks for the visit and the comment!

Anonymous said...

There is research showing an ingredient in most toothpastes can cause this sloughing of tissue in people sensitive to it. Sodium Laurel Sulfate is found in 95% of toothpastes, (as well as soaps, shampoos, etc.) It is a foaming agent. Some of the natural toothpastes do not include it, as well as some of the Sensodyne pastes. As awareness increases, I believe that more of the companies will offer SLS-free products. I hope this info will help you!
Debbie-Registered Dental Hygienist

thegermanygirl said...

Thanks, Debbie! I checked my toothpaste, and sure enough: It does contain SLS. Over the last few years, I've started using Arm & Hammer toothpastes again. I don't know if SLS is the cause of my troubles, but I only occasionally have trouble with the A & H products. If I make a point of rinsing thoroughly, I generally don't have sloughing.

It's still something of a mystery to me -- but I'm going to start paying closer attention to the SLS content. Thanks again!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the help. I've been experienceing this problem for months. I've been using Arm and Hammer Advanced Whitening. I've switched to Colgate and am getting much less slough. It took a few days for me to notice any difference though. Am still not completely happy as I'd rather not have this problem AT ALL.

Anonymous said...

I have the same problem. It is so gross. I have the best luck with Arm & Hammer Toothpaste. Even the whitening kind is better than most other brands. Who knows what the ingredient is that causes this??

Furly said...

I posted my comment like 4 years ago, so i was very surprised to get an email on this topic. I cant tell you what the ingredient is, but i took the advice of Court, and ive been using Toms, peppermint gel exclusively for many years and thankfully "mouthboogers" are now a distant memory.